Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Campaign against Internet censorship

As much as I complain about the attacks on free speech going on in this country, Americans still have far more rights than most of the rest of the world's citizens. Amnesty International has started a new website/campaign designed to publicize the ways in which governments are censoring and filtering the web and even jailing their citizens for web publications.

Here's the pledge Amnesty is asking people to sign regarding Internet freedom:

"I believe the internet should be a force for political freedom, not repression. People have the right to seek and receive information and to express their peaceful beliefs online without fear or interference. I call on governments to stop the unwarranted restriction of freedom of expression on the internet and on companies to stop helping them do it."

Link to BBC story about Amnesty's Irrepressible.info campaign

As I've mentioned before, Amnesty is far from the only group to focus attention on worldwide censorship and repression. Sadly, one of the best -- the Committee to Protect Bloggers -- ceased operations just two weeks ago due to a lack of funding. Here's a sad but true quote from the founder's explanation of why he shut down the blog:
"I am, however, more worried than ever that free speech is less and less a priority for the overwhelming majority of the world’s citizens."